Parks After Dark: 9 Ideas for Nighttime Fun

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NPS photo by Mike Shaw

Summer nights may be short, but national parks often host extra activities to educate and entertain visitors during this popular tourist season, including more fun things to do after dark. Whether you’re exploring on your own or hanging out with a ranger, try a few of these excuses to stay out late in special places.

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Protect the James River from Ill-Sited Power Lines

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© Scott Neville for the Washington Post

The James River in Virginia is virtually unchanged since Captain John Smith explored its waters 400 years ago. Yet a local power company wants to build a new transmission line with 17 gigantic towers through this culturally rich waterway. Please urge developers to explore other locations for this project, which could destroy a seminal part of American history.

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A Mammoth Victory

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© City of Waco Parks and Recreation

On July 10, President Obama designated the country’s newest National Park Service monument: a fossil-rich area known as Waco Mammoth in Texas. Meet the woman who oversees the site’s outreach and operations, and learn how the spectacular bones discovered at the park have provided researchers with unique insights into the Pleistocene Era.

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Room to Roam

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Photo © Jonathan Eden/iStockphoto

NPCA's new report and infographic on Yellowstone's famous bison outlines a brighter future for these iconic animals. Learn more and urge Interior Secretary Jewell to write a better future for these animals.

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The ‘Outrageous Evil’ That Led to the Birth of the National Park Service

A painting of Hetch Hetchy Valley in 1870, before the area was flooded and dammed. Art by Albert Bierstadt.Today, the National Park Service celebrates its 99th birthday. Establishing an agency dedicated to the care of America’s national parks is one of our country’s most visionary accomplishments. The lands and landmarks our park rangers protect are among the world’s greatest wonders. Long before families loaded up station wagons to head to places like Grand […]

Trivia Challenge: A Stockpile of Cold War History

Minuteman Missile National Historic Site, South DakotaQ: Numerous national park sites commemorate military engagements. Only one specifically interprets the history of the standoff that estranged two superpowers for more than four decades and threatened the future of life on Earth: the Cold War. Can you name this national park site?   A: Just northeast of Badlands National Park in western South […]

The Elk Can’t Speak: Denying Pollution Doesn’t Help National Parks

An elk at Yosemite, one of the national parks with the worst air quality in the country. Photo © Americanspirit/Dreamstime.Advocating for better air quality is something I do for a living. I recently worked with a team of experts to release a report that found a shocking number of our national parks—75% of the 48 we researched—have significant air pollution problems. Problems that could worsen asthma attacks in children. Problems that could irritate the lungs […]




National Parks Conservation Association
National Parks Conservation Association

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